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Sending nurses abroad leads to decline of RP health sector – group

MANILA, Philippines - A militant group has said that the continuous sending of Filipino nurses abroad is causing the quality of the Philippine’s health sector to decline.

“The bulk of our nurses go abroad, ang naiiwan sa atin yung bagong graduates, ‘yung quality tuloy ng health care bumabagsak (The bulk of our nurses go abroad, the ones left are the new graduates, thus the quality of our health care declines)," said Dr. Carol Araullo, chairperson of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan).

She said this “short-sighted labor export policy" has caused our hospitals to lose experienced medical consultants and doctors who have converted to nursing.

“This is literally brain drain," she told GMANews.TV in a recent interview.

Moreover, she said that these “converted" nurses do not get to practice their skill at the level they really are at.

She said that the number of students taking up medicine also have declined, thinking that nursing is the only way to go abroad.

Data from the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) indicated that enrolment for medical and allied courses in the Philippines grew from 164,000 in 2002 to 219,498 in 2003.

“Even that potential will be affected by this recession," said Araullo.

She said the current global financial crisis is somehow a good thing if it could make some overseas Filipino workers (OFW) come home.

However, she said that returning health care specialists do not always find it easy to return and work in the country after working overseas.

“A lot of doctors who come back take three to five years to reintegrate," she said.

Araullo, however, did not say what should be done with more than 400,000 licensed nurses who are said to have remained jobless in the country since the United States and United Kingdom froze their hiring of foreign nurses in 2006.

Meanwhile, the Philippine government is still bent on sending nurses abroad as part of a strategy to cushion the impact of the global financial crisis.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has said that Australia, New Zealand, Norway, and France would need the services of Filipinos – particularly nurses, information technology workers, truck drivers, hotel personnel, and heavy equipment operators in the near future.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) also aims to hire 10,000 more nurses to meet their urgent need for medical staff.

Negotiations are also underway to make the entry of Filipino nurses to the Czech Republic possible in the future, the DOLE said. - Kimberly Jane T. Tan, GMANews.TV

paano naman ksi ang hirap ng buhay dito sa pilipinas, sana inaaksyonan naman ng gobyerno ang problema ng mga nurses dito, taasan naman ang sahod, enough para mabuhay ng mga nurses ang pamilya nila dito noh..

oo nga..wehave mouths to feed too..
at saka, heller, panu nman kaming mga newly grads matututo kng di kmi i-hire ng mga hospitals na inaaplyan nmin!!!

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